Of the Plurality of Worlds

An Essay

by William Whewell;


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Of the Plurality of Worlds

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This controversial essay, first published in 1853, addresses the question of the existence of intelligent life on other planets. It was first published anonymously, owing to the ferocity of the ongoing debates between the religious and scientific scholarly communities. Its author, William Whewell (1794-1866) was a leading intellectual of the Victorian period, and a notable polymath. A contemporary and adviser of Herschel, Darwin and Faraday, he wrote extensively on subjects ranging from astronomy and mineralogy to moral philosophy, educational reform and architecture, and engaged with John Stuart Mill in a lively debate about inductive reasoning. In Of The Plurality of Worlds, Whewell denied the probability of life elsewhere in the universe, afraid that the concept of extraterrestrial life would encourage the theory of evolution and put at risk mankind's connection to God.

Of the Plurality of Worlds by William Whewell was published by Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing) in October 2010. The ISBN for Of the Plurality of Worlds is 9780511692734.

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Details for Of the Plurality of Worlds

Page last updated 9th December 2016
Author / Artist
Book FormatOnline resource
PublisherCambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing) (October 2010)
ISBN9780511692734
ISBN-100511692730
Product Code4491867
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